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The Canadian Commission for UNESCO connects Canadians with the work of UNESCO. Its aim is to create a society in which Canadians share knowledge and learn from each other, locally and globally, in order to build peaceful, equitable and sustainable futures. The Commission operates within the Canada Council for the Arts.
Refugees and Human Rights:
Student Poetry Contest
March 2nd to April 2nd, 2015
Again this year, the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Canada, in collaboration with the Canadian Commission for UNESCO (CCUNESCO), has organized a pan Canadian poetry contest in celebration of both the March 21, 2015 UNESCO World Poetry Day and the upcoming June 20, 2015 UN World Refugee Day.
The contest invites students from Grades 4 to 12 to express their feelings on the theme of refugee and human rights issues and use art as both a form of expression and a way to engage on important social themes.
More information on the contest:
Poetry Contest on the UNHCR website (bottom of the page)
The deadline is April 2, 2015. Amazing prizes to be won!
CCUNESCO President appointed to the Order of Canada!
Ms. Christina Cameron receives this prestigious honour for her contributions to heritage preservation through her work with Parks Canada, with UNESCO’s World Heritage Convention, and as a Professor and Chairholder, Canada Research Chair on Built Heritage, School of Architecture, Faculté de l’aménagement, Université de Montréal.
October 27th is UNESCO World Day for Audiovisual Heritage
“Archives at Risk: Much more to do”
Audiovisual documents such as films, radio and television programs, audio and video recordings, contain the primary records of the 20th and 21st centuries. It is urgent that we protect it.
To mark this day the Canadian Commission for UNESCO partnered with CINEMAexpo67, Cinématheque Québécoise, NFB, and the City of Montréal for the event Polar Life. Polar life is one of Expo 67's most ingenious multiscreen experiments. The Expo 67 films attracted worldwide attention and over 50 million visitors during its exhibition from April 22 to October 27 1967. Polar Life is the first of a series of re-creations that will lead up to the 50th 2017 of Expo 67.
Did you know that IMAX is a Canadian invention?
Come meet with Graeme Ferguson co-founder of IMAX at the Cinematheque québécoise, November 1st at 2 pm.
World Teachers’ Day 2014: Invest in the future, invest in teachers!
On October 5th, UNESCO and its partners invite you all to help spread the message that investing in our teachers is key. As countries are shaping the post-2015 development agenda, it is essential that teachers remain a priority. Fostering high-quality and inclusive lifelong learning for all is not only essential to developing more just and equitable societies, but also to strengthen education systems worldwide. An education system, after all is only as good as its teachers.
Learn more about WTD and UNESCO’s priorities in Education
Share your plans and put your Canadian event on the map!
The 8th Extraordinary Session of the World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology (COMEST) will be held in Quebec City, October 1st and 2nd. It will bring together 40 people, among whom are experts in ethics, scientists and researchers from various academic and professional fields.
Themes to be discussed
The Revision of the Recommendation on the Status of Scientific Researchers (1974).
The convergence of technologies and their implications for sustainable development.
Ethical governance of science and technology as ways to address global inequalities.
Organised by the Commission de l’éthique en science et en technologie du Québec and UNESCO in collaboration with the Quebec Governement, the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, and Laval University.
To register and attend (at no cost) the COMEST session please send an email to : firstname.lastname@example.org
More information : 8th extraordinary session of COMEST
Please note that the COMEST meeting will be followed by a symposium on water security, on October 3.
Danika Billie Littlechild appointed Vice-President of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO
''Canada Council for the Arts is proud to announce the appointment of Danika Billie Littlechild. She is the first Aboriginal person to be appointed to the Bureau of the Executive Committee of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO in its almost sixty years of existence. Danika has been contributing to the work of the CCU since 2003 on a range of issues including youth, culture, the environment and human rights. Her experience and knowledge will continue to enrich the accomplishments of the Commission.'' said Christina Cameron, President of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO. Ms. Littlechild takes up her duties immediately. (Photo: Kelly Bell)
International Youth Day 2014: Mental Health Matters
The theme of International Youth Day 2014 is ’’Youth and Mental Health‘‘. Youth with mental health conditions can often experience stigma and discrimination, which in turn can lead to exclusion. On August 12, let’s take action to overcome this stigma and ensure that young people with mental health conditions can lead full and healthy lives, free of isolation and unnecessary shame. Let’s talk about inclusion! #InternationalYouthDay #MentalHealthMatters
Learn more about IYD and the UN Campaign on Youth and Mental Health
Have a look at the International Youth Day 2014 Map of Events
8th UNESCO Youth Forum: Recommendations and Operational Strategy on Youth 2014-2021!
The Commission wishes to thank the Canadian Youth Delegates, Ms. Betsy Leimbigler and Claire Paetkau, for their outstanding contribution to the 8th UNESCO Youth Forum held in Paris, from October 29-31, 2013. The national consultations, in which they took part in preparation of the Forum, enabled them to bring to the world stage Canadian perspectives on youth and social inclusion. This in turn meaningfully contributed to the elaboration of final recommendations which were approved at the end of this international event. These recommendations are now guiding the implementation of the newly released UNESCO Operational Strategy on Youth 2014-2021.
Learn more about the Youth Forum and UNESCO Youth Program
Louise Filiatrault is named Secretary-General of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO
The Canada Council for the Arts is very pleased to announce the appointment of Louise Filiatrault as the Secretary-General of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, beginning September 2, 2014.
“Ms. Filiatrault brings to this position a deep content knowledge of culture and heritage. Her interest and expertise in communication, reinforcing networks and leveraging new technologies will advance the Canada Council’s and the Canadian Commission’s strategic priorities,” said Mr. Simon Brault, Director and CEO of the Canada Council.
“I strongly believe that Ms. Filiatrault’s demonstrated capacity to collaborate with partners to develop content and deliver programs to a wide range of stakeholders will assist in advancing UNESCO’s values and programs in Canada,” said Christina Cameron, President, Canadian Commission for UNESCO.
Christina Cameron is named President of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO
Ottawa-July 04, 2014- The Canada Council for the Arts is very pleased to announce the appointment of Christina Cameron as President of the Canadian Commission for UNESCO. Her term began at the Commission's Annual General Meeting held in Victoria from June 5 to 7, 2014. She was appointed for a term of 2 years, renewable once. Ms. Cameron was formerly Vice-President of the Commission from 2010 to 2014.
read more [PDF, 154.8 KB].
June 21st is National Aboriginal Day!
On June 21st, Canadians from all walks of life are invited to celebrate diverse cultures and heritage and outstanding achievements of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples in Canada. National Aboriginal Day, proclaimed by Governor General Roméo Leblanc in 1996, is celebrated through events taking place from coast to coast to coast.
Youth from the Youth Advisory Group and from the Songhees community at the 54th AGM © Jimmy Ung
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO is dedicated to promoting intercultural and inclusive dialogue among all Canadians with the ultimate goals of fostering peace and striving for equity. On June 21st, let’s celebrate the different ways of seeing the world and let’s learn from one another!
Learn more about the Governor General’s Proclamation
Read the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
World Refugee Day 2014: 1 refugee family without shelter is too many
On June 20th, the United Nations and countless civic groups around the world celebrate World Refugee Day (WRD). This celebration is to honour the courage, strength and determination of women, men and children who are forced to flee their homes under threat of persecution. In 2013, millions of families in Syria, the Central African Republic and South Sudan, amongst others, were forced to flee their homes due to armed conflicts. The 2014 WRD campaign invites individuals throughout the world to tell their refugee stories. The Canadian Commission for UNESCO has done the same through a cross-Canada poetry contest organized in partnership with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Canada.
Learn more about World Refugee Day and share your refugee story!
Events taking place across Canada on June 20, 2014
Poetry for Refugees and Human Rights
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) in Canada, in collaboration with the Canadian Commission for UNESCO (CCU), has organized a cross-Canada poetry contest in celebration of both the March 21, 2014 UNESCO World Poetry Day and with perspective on the upcoming June 20, 2014 UN World Refugee Day. The contest provided some 200 students from Grades 7 to 12 with the opportunity to express their feelings on the theme of refugee and human rights issues and use art as both a form of expression and a way to engage on important social themes.
Learn more about the contest and the winners
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO connects Canadians with the work of UNESCO. Its aim is to create a society in which Canadians share knowledge and learn from each other, locally and globally, in order to build peaceful, equitable and sustainable futures. Learn more about the Commission’s activities and future plans in its 2013-2014 Report on activities [PDF, 6.6 MB] and Strategic plan [PDF, 226.7 KB] presented at the Annual General Meeting, June 6 2014.
Join the team!
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO is looking for a Administrative Coordinator and Assistant to the Secretary-General, more info
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO and the Canada Council for the Arts invite you to celebrate International Jazz Day 2014 in the premises of the Canada Council. Join us in the entrance hall of the 150 Elgin Street, Ottawa, on Wednesday April 30th, 2014, from 12:00 -1:00 pm and jazz up your lunch!
Simon Brault named New Director and CEO of the Canada Council for the Arts
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO welcomes the appointment by the Minister of Canadian Heritage and Official Languages of Simon Brault as the new Director and CEO of the Canada Council for the Arts. In 1957, the Canadian Commission for UNESCO was established by the Canada Council for the Arts, a federal Crown corporation, following the Canada Council for the Arts ACT and an Order-in-Council.
”Simon has been a tireless champion of public engagement in the arts. We believe this is vital to the sustainability of the Canadian arts sector. The Canada Council will benefit from the vision of such a forward-looking and credible individual. Simon’s intellect and creativity will help set a strong course for the Canada Council’s future.‘‘ - Mr. Joseph L. Rotman, Chair of the Canada Council. Mr. Brault will assume the role on June 26, 2014 for a 5-year term.
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO is pleased to announce the Canadian launch of the Education for All Global Monitoring Report. Entitled Teaching and learning: Achieving quality for all [PDF, 14.6 MB], this year’s edition sounds the alarm on a worldwide learning crisis. This report is particularly relevant in the post-2015 context as it presents 10 education development strategies for all while showing world decision-makers the social and economic value of quality education. The launch is part of the Revisioning Education for All conference to be held in Toronto from March 10 to 15, 2014.
To learn more… [PDF, 315.3 KB]
Professor Kieffer, Director at the Douglas Institute in Montreal, awarded the International L’Oréal-UNESCO Prize!
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO would like to congratulate Professor Brigitte Kieffer, Scientific Director of the Douglas Mental Health University Institute Research Centre, McGill University, Montreal, for her L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Award.
Photo: UNESCO website
Each year, five outstanding women scientists (one per continent) are honoured for the their research, the strength of their commitments and their positive impact on society. The L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science 2014 Awards Ceremony will be held on March 19, 2014 at the Sorbonne in Paris (France). It will be presided by Professor Günter Blobel, 1999 Nobel Prize in Medicine. Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO, and Jean-Paul Agon, Chairman and CEO of L’Oréal and Chairman of the L’Oréal Foundation, will also participate.
Find out more on Professor Kieffer and the Douglas Institute
The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson Pays tribute to Women in Radio
February 13 is World Radio Day [PDF, 201.4 KB]. On this occasion, former Governor General of Canada the right Honorable Adrienne Clarkson joins the Canadian Commission for UNESCO and invites Canadians to celebrate the power of this media as a means to achieve cultural outreach, freedom of expression, and social transformation.
Press Release [PDF, 201.4 KB]
Audio message: mp3 [MP3, 2.2 MB] wav [WAV, 6.3 MB]
L’Oréal Canada and the Canadian Commission for UNESCO honoured Canadian women researchers
On November 28, distinguished Canadian women researchers were honoured and rewarded by L’Oréal Canada and the Canadian Commission for UNESCO as part of the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Programme. The 11th National Awards Ceremony, who took place at the Embassy of France, showcased the work of the 2013 laureates, Dr. Évemie Dubé and Dr. Laura McKinnon, and highlighted their scientific excellence in research. Both outstanding and talented scientists were recognized for the contribution of their research, their commitment to overcome the global challenges of tomorrow and for their contribution to the advancement of UNESCO’s ideals in science. A Mentor fellowship was also awarded to a UNESCO associated schools student. For more information on the programme, visit the For Women in Science website, and watch the 2013 promotional video.
Let's celebrate the 150th anniversary of Constantine Cavafy!
The Embassy of Greece, the Canadian Commission for UNESCO and the Parnassos Hellenic Cultural Society of Ottawa, in collaboration with the Museum of Classical Antiquities of the University of Ottawa, are pleased to invite you for an evening of poetry in celebration of the 150th anniversary of Constantine Cavafy (1863-1933). UNESCO is associated with this celebration because Cavafy was instrumental in the revival and recognition of Greek poetry. He is also credited with establishing many facets of 20th century European poetry.
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO participates at the 8th UNESCO Youth Forum
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO participates at the 8th UNESCO Youth Forum from Oct. 29th to 31st 2013 in Paris, France. Check out the Blog of the Canadian Youth Delegation, Betsy Leimbigler and Claire Paetkau who will be taking you step by step through the process of preparation and consultation for the Youth Forum, and also providing updates as the Forum takes place.
The Canadian Commission for UNESCO in collaboration with the Canadian Biosphere Reserves Association and the University of Saskatchewan has produced a publication aimed at demonstrating how collective efforts and knowledge sharing can be beneficial to biodiversity conservation, sustainable development, and education. The publication entitled Learning from each other: proven good practices in Canadian Biosphere reserves will be launched on the occasion of the EuroMAB 2013 conference, to be hosted by the Frontenac Arch Biosphere, in Brockville, Ontario, from October 15-19, 2013.
International Day of Peace! Education for Peace!
21 September is International Day of Peace (IDP). Education is the foundation of any lasting peace. ''Education fosters the culture of dialogue that is necessary to resolve conflicts.''-Message from Irina Bokova on the occasion of IDP 2013 . Peace Day provides an opportunity for individuals, organizations and nations to create practical acts of peace on a shared date. To learn more about this initiative and be inspired, visit the United Nations website.
Happy United Nation's International Youth Day to all !
This year’s theme of “Youth Migration: Moving Development Forward” is set to raise awareness of the challenges and opportunities that migration presents for young people globally. The Canadian Commission for UNESCO is proud to support youth engagement across the country. One way of doing it is through the participation of its Youth Advisory Group’s composed of 25 members. This fall, the Commission will provide support for two youth delegates to travel to Paris in order to attend the 8th UNESCO Youth Forum and carry the voices of Canadian youth.The Commission is also proud to support the Associated Schools Project Network’s (ASPnet) 62 member schools in Canada as the program celebrates its 60th anniversary in 2013. Through this commitment, youth are being inspired, engaged and given the opportunity to speak up and participate in building both their communities and a world of peace.
To learn more, visit: United Nations International Youth Day.
The Alberta Museums Association (AMA) and the Canadian Commission for UNESCO are pleased to present the AMA’s 2013 Conference dedicated to the exploration of Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH), to be held in Edmonton, Alberta, from September 19th-21th, 2013. The conference entitled ’’Landscapes to languages: What shapes us?’’ will cover topics such as oral traditions and expressions, performing arts and social practices, traditional craftsmanship, and knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe. On this occasion, the Commission will be leading a symposium aimed at fostering the discussion around the importance of culture in our society and will be featuring presentations by recognized experts including members of the Commission. For more information about the program, please visit the event page.
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Strategic Plan (2014-2021) [PDF, 226.7 KB]
2013-2014 Report on Activities [PDF, 6.8 MB]